My dogs love chewing on ice cubes and the frozen cubes helps them stay cool during summer’s heat. But plain old ice cubes are boring. It only takes a few minutes to make fruity and healthy frozen dog treats most canines enjoy eating. You might even want to give them a try yourself and check here.
You have to be careful giving people food to dogs and cats. Chocolate, raisins, onions, and grapes are just some examples of human food that’s toxic to pets. However, some of our food is safe and even healthy for dogs to eat. Blueberries, bananas, canned pumpkin (not the kind you use to make pumpkin pies), cranberries, and strawberries are fruits that are safe for canines to eat and most dogs love them. They can all be used in some simple homemade fruity treats for your dog.
Blueberries, cranberries, strawberries, blackberries, and raspberries are just as beneficial for dogs as they are for us and most dogs love them. Berries are a great source of antioxidants and may also help prevent heart disease, cancer, as well as other health problems. Studies done on older canines have shown blueberries can help them retain good cognitive function as they age. Dogs that might be suffering with canine Cognitive Dysfunction Syndrome could benefit from eating blueberries.
Cranberries, fresh or juice, helps prevent urinary tract infection in dogs and cats. UTIs are common in female dogs, but males can also develop infections. It’s a serious bacterial infection in the dog’s urinary tract. Cranberries won’t cure a UTI, but they are a good preventive measure to keep bacteria from attaching to the wall of the bladder and helps lower the pH in urine. Cranberries are high in vitamin C.
Bananas are low in sodium, a good source of Vitamin C, contains antioxidants, has easy to digest carbohydrates, is a good source of energy, and potassium rich. Most dogs love bananas.
Canned pumpkin helps with diarrhea and constipation. It’s important to give your dog plain canned pumpkin. Do not use canned pumpkin you buy to make pies with. It contains spices and sugar that’s not good for your dog, especially nutmeg. It doesn’t take a lot of pumpkin (two tablespoons) to help with your dog’s diarrhea or constipation. Pumpkin is a good source of dietary fiber, is low in cholesterol, sodium, saturated fat, and is a good source of Potassium, Magnesium, Phosphorus, and Vitamin E. Diarrhea can be an indication something is wrong, especially if there’s blood in it. Loose stools could be from an upset stomach, food allergies, an infection of some kind, worms or due to a change in his regular food. If his diarrhea continues after giving him pumpkin, see a vet.
Two simple summertime dog treats are frozen banana and peanut butter treats or frozen fruit and yogurt treats. My dogs love both, but they are partial to the peanut butter and banana treats. Keep in mind, these aren’t good treats to give your dog inside, especially if he likes to eat his treats on the living room carpet, on the couch or in your favorite chair.
Healthy fruit and yogurt cubes, 3/4 cup plain applesauce, 1/2 cup of one of the safe berries, half of a chopped banana, 1 and 1/2 cups non fat plain yogurt. Blend together, spoon into ice cube trays and freeze. I put the berries through a food processor to chop them into smaller pieces before blending them with the yogurt, banana, and applesauce. You can mix berries instead of using just one kind.
Dog approved banana and peanut butter poppers, 1 cup non fat plain yogurt, 2 ½ – 3 Tablespoons creamy peanut butter and one small banana (mashed). Mix up the peanut butter and yogurt and then add in the mashed up banana. Spoon into ice cube trays and freeze. You can vary the recipe by using canned pumpkin (not the one for pumpkin pies) instead of peanut butter. The nice thing about making your own dog treats is you control what’s in them. Most dogs love frozen treats, especially when it’s hot outside. You can adjust any recipe with your dog’s favorite fruit, as long as you know it’s safe for them to eat. If your dog likes cranberries, pour juice in an ice cube tray and freeze.